‘Persephone’ has TV pedigree

Leight, Stiles on board experimental stage show

The upcoming “Persephone” has all the right experimental theater credentials: It’s a multimedia project from edgy troupe Ridge Theater. It tells its story in less-than-linear fashion. And it’s at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, no stranger to arty international offerings.

What it also has, though, is a couple of creatives from the unexpectedly mainstream realm of TV.

The script is by Warren Leight, whose Tony win for “Side Man” launched a robust tube career that has included “Law and Order: Criminal Intent,” “In Treatment” and the upcoming FX skein “Lights Out,” for which he’s showrunner. And it stars Julia Stiles, currently in the midst of a season-long arc on Showtime’s “Dexter.”

Ridge’s connections to Leight and Stiles are longstanding. Leight has known the troupe since he penned an early rave review for the company in the Village Voice in the 1980s, while Stiles first acted with Ridge when she was 11.

But scheduling stage work alongside TV demands has been hectic at best. Leight recounts grabbing time with his collaborators in erratic middle-of-the-night meetings, and Stiles has furiously been working to finish up with “Dexter” prior to returning to Gotham for the BAM run, set for Oct. 26-30.

Nonetheless, such legit outings can bring a welcome respite from the plot-driven realism of TV fare. Leight likens the experience both to a zen sand-painting and to a musician suddenly allowed to play jazz after a long stint with a pit orchestra.

The scribe adds he always keeps the stage in mind, but TV keeps pulling him back.

“I kept thinking, ‘OK, this TV thing is going to slow down,’?” he says. “And then I did 35 episodes of ‘In Treatment.’?”

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Legit News from Variety